tv Mc Laughlin Group PBS September 23, 2011 8:30pm-9:00pm PDT
i reject the idea that asking a hedge fund manager to pay the same tax rate as a plumber or teacher is class warfare. i think it's just the right thing to do. >> president obama this week rm reducing the nation's debt. the heart of the plan is the "buffet rule," so-called by the president, referring to warren buffet, the third richest man in the world with his $50 billion. okay, buffet's rule, according to obama -- wealthy americans earning a pre-tax income of $1
million a year or more should not pay a lower tax rate than that levied on middle-class income earners. so tax the wealthy, says the president. the obama tax plan also eliminates the bush tax cuts for individuals making over $200,000 a year, and families making $250,000 a year. house republican speaker john boehner blasted the president and his plan, accusing the president of class warfare by demagoguing the wealthy to gain the support of the middle- class. boehner says the president is acting more like campaigner in chief than commander in chief. >> there's been a disappointing because it's pretty clear the president's decided to forget his role as president and leader of our nation in a time of economic uncertainty and to begin the camphis re- election some 14 months awayay >> question, is the buffet rule
good policy or is it class warfare, pat? >> the buffet rule is rooted in the philosophy of envy and the gospel of greed. mr. buffet is unhappy because he doesn't pay as high ying eno in a check. john, here's the reasoning here. on real income, regular income it's 35%. on capital gains it's only 15%. the reason it is capital gains is the return on investment. if you want more investment in the economy, why in heavens name would you raise taxes on it? what obama is doing is taking his own proposals, repackaging them, basically, and push them become out on the table, and he will get nothing out of it. >> buffet pays himself a salary, $100,000 a year. >> he'll pay 35% on that, if it gets up to a certain level. but what -- >> well that, is peanuts. >> yes, that is peanuts. >> he moves his other money into his investment. >> capital gains that carry
interest, and that's only taxed at 15%. >> right. >> and it should be, because that is investment, which is what we need. >> so you think it's highly motivated that he does it that way, and he is not saving himself a real bundle? >> i think he's a split contract playing to the crowd. >> i think warren buffet is exactly right and his proposals were brought to a vote, the people would support it. the top 20% in the country i think controls 80% the wealth. you can do some adjustments there, and the sweet deal for the coupon clippers and the in vice presidentors should not trump what working people do to earn a living. and they're paying at a much higher tax rate, and our middle- class is getting squeezed in. one of rallies the president had somebody had a sign that said they only call it class war when we fight back. and president also said it's not class war, it's math. you've got to adjust the revenuf here somewhere, and the buffet rule is just a small element of the president's
attempts to recalculate where we are. >> tax me? >> well -- and the bush tax cuts, existing law that they're supposed to expire. they were unaffordable when they were first passed and they're certainly unaffordable now. >> it's not even a policy yet. there isn't a proposal yet of what form this buffet rule will take. in other words, will it be in her alternative minimum tax? just taxing lots of capital gains as income? he's not putting it out there to gets some legislative accomplishment in order to change the law. he's putting it out there to demagogue against republicans who will oppose any tax hike and say the republicans are fighting against a tax hike okay for the rich that even buffet wants. >> why has buffet come forward this way? >> buffet has been doing this for years. every time it's like, warren buffet, supporting a tack hike. he does it all the time. he wants estate tax in there, he wants higher tax rates.
he's a liberal. i can on by how he might benefit. >> what is his net worked? >> 42 billion. >> more than that. >> he's in the top 10. used to be number two, behind bill gates. >> what is his net worth? >> i don't follow it. and he doesn't consult me on it. >> what is your net worth? >> i don't follow that either. >> are was a billionaire? >> yes. >> do you do what buffet does, declare yourself a salary, and if so, what is it? >> well, i'm -- i'm perfectly happy to talk about his salary, if you would like. but let me just say -- >> the way he's managing, $100,000 a year then the rest he puts in investment. >> he pays a 15% rate on the rest of it. >> is that okay? >> what the law permits. so it's -- yes, perfectly legal. >> is he entitled to be a higher fence on the matter of taxes? >> i do think he's concerned with the well first of the country. he's led amongst other things a lot of people to contribute to
charitable causes, particularly in their wills, to devote at least 50% of their estate to charitable causes. and he's been a real path find they're in this regard. but i want to get to the issue. the issue is very serious. i believe the wealthy people should pay additional taxes, if only for political reasons, because otherwise as a result a difficulty getting through a lot of pain for a lot of people in terms of cutting back entitlement programs some i supported higher taxes on the wealthy for years. i was opposed to bush as tax cuts. itches opposed to reinstating the tax cuts. i don't believe that is anything that stimulates the economy. i do believ3 very strongly that we have to get our fiscal house in order -- >> did you hear what connie said earlier, that we haven't gotten a clear statement of obama about what his tax policy is? >> well, this is a -- the problem is -- the point is, whatever he says -- here's his approach is purely political. if he wanted to get something done, he would have -- wouldn't
have given a speeches on television. >> let's tie want to tie it up way. 14 months from now, we're having an election. it's the midterm election. it's quite clear president obama at this point does want to run. and he does want to win. is this calculated, the terms behalf he is putting forward calculated with that in mind, more than anything else? >> this president has reached out a hand to congress numerable times and gotten it slapped. i think it's pretty clear the republicans are not going to pass anything. they may be shamed into extending the payroll tax cut, but that's about it. so he has no choice but to go to the country -- excuse me, pat -- you're wishing to dive in. >> no, no. >> he has no choice, but to go to the country and say this is my vision, this is what the republicans want to do, and if it's going to take 14 months, i think that's criminal to make the country wait 14 months for any policy action, but that's his choice, and if you -- >> that's what he did. >> if he is campaigning, that's
what he should be doing. >> she is right, obama has given up on the republicans. i thought he was serious when he came out with the jobs bill. i thought there were some good ideas, we would urge republicans to go halfway. so he comes out and it's a pearl harbor attack on the republicans. it's class warfare. why? no chance for any compromise now. for 14 muntz as the country goes through hell, he'll be there campaigning when he's the president of the united states. [everyone talking at once] >> excuse me! [everyone talking at once] >> not cross talks here. >> it's your turn. >> i dough think -- as far as i'm concern, inescapable to conclude he's out there campaigning. if he want to get anything done he would have met with the republicans and democratic leaders privately, with whatever they can, both parties would get the credit and the blame. >> i asked him that to get him in it. >> all those tendser little egos, they can't take the
president standing up and setting out his policies. >> he could have had compromise if he wanted to talk about spending. >> she doesn't finish. >> the reaction from capitol hill was, oh, yeah, they were very nice for a few days. it was clear they weren't going to do anything, simply slow walking it. >> connie? >> he could have gotten compromise on spending cuts. there's lots of spending the republican wouldn't want to get up. democrats cut a issue two, the rino in the room! >> we need to nominate someone who will have a stark clear difference between the republican nominee and president obama. >> we don't need to nominate obama light. >> republican in name only, rino. is that what mitt romney is, a
rino. rick perry thinks so. the rap is that mitt romney is a republican in name only, not conservative enough certainly to be the rereblican standard bearer. tea party officials say a lot of their voters won't turn out if romney is the republican nominee. rick perry is number one in the polling of republicans, and republican leaning independents. also, pier, 31%. romney, 24%. ron paul 13%. the rest of the g.o.p. candidates for the republican nomination are below 10%. from highest to lowest, michele bachmann, newt gingrich, her man cain, rick santorum, jon huntsman. so, rick perry today is the most likely g.o.p. nominee to challenge barack obama for the u.s. presidency in 13 short months. but, romney does better than
perry against obama in general election polling of registered voters. romney versus obama. romney wins, 49% to obama's 47%. okay. now perry. perry versus obama, obama wins with 50%. perry, 45%. question, does this strike you as cheeky? for governor perry who late in live converted from democratic party to the republican party, to question romney's political conviction? i ask you, tim. >> i think that romney care is a huge difficulty for mitt romney, because the main thing the republicans can use against obama is obama care. so on that very relevant issue -- romney care in massachusetts they passed a law that included individual mandates as well as subsidies for people to get insurance, and other -- >> what's the problem?
individual mandate? >> individual mandate. and today the fact that it was a prototype for obama's national bill. and i think romney says that state by state, and this happened -- customized for massachusetts. >> it's way too huge. but the problem is you had four years ago john mccain in the same position that romney walks with all these things on immigration, on taxes, campaign finance reform. no republican could nominate him because he was too much of a rino, and he got it. >> republican in name only. >> way too cute, you've got governor perry supporting a very progressive and caressed position on immigration, where he paid -- allows the children of illegals to pay in state tuition. so he's got some liabilities in the private area. but romney is nomination, he could win. and at some point primary voters may compare perry and romney in terms of electriccability. and i think romney comes out ahead. i don't think perry did well in
the debate. had leaks uncomfortable on stage. he has rehearsed lines that he can't even really get out. and he's got some positions that are just -- >> i think she's right on that. >> on the debate? >> perry did not have a good debate. secondly, her point about immigration is illegal aliens getting in-state tuition is a blazing issue with conservatives. romney has hammered perry on it. it is far more damaging turning out to be than the individual mandate. romney seems to be handling the individual mandate very well and given the polls it doesn't seem to bother him that much. i think and we were talking earlier, it may now be an even race between perry and romney because i think perry starting to slip a little bit after the two debates. >> you think perry is ahead? >> no, perry may be ahead just slightly, but i do think it is an even race. >> with time on the side of pier or on the side of romney? >> i think it's more on the side of romney. i'm surprised frankly that it is, because i'm surprised -- perry has some real abilities and real talents, and particularly he understands how
small business works rather than just large business. different kind of candidate in that sense. and it travels through his experience. but, you're in the major leagues now. and at this point, he has not handled himself in three debates, and i thought that was really -- i was surprised because in small groups he handles himself very, very well. >> let's talk about mormonism is. that a killer for him, romney? >> i don't think so. i think the country is beyond that. >> i do. >> i really do. >> do the polls suggest you are correct? >> no, no. >> problems in south carolina, john -- we're going to find out. but in a number of these southern states, romney is not that high up. >> exit question, which candidate to the rereblican is prefer, romney or perry? the gray bids. >> the gray bids prefer frightened to death of perry and prefer romney. but perry still has some real attractive features to him that -- that the grassroots love. >> perry has a big personality and the tea party people want
to shake things up, and they think he could be a transformative president, whereas romney is a safe technocrat and could get swing voters. >> now, if you're a gray bid, do you want to keep the tea party quiet in your corner? want to keep their energy, but you don't want them to take over. >> wow. where is the end of that and the beginning of another? >> eleanor is right in this case. and yes, the party -- [everyone talking at once] the party leads want mitt romney. they think he's one of them, while perry i've heard many people say he's a little too religious for me. >> what is the story? >> i agree. i think the gray beards of the party, establishment of the party, prefer romney. he's a safer candidate and it's too early to tell because we're going to see a number of primaries, and it looks like romney would be an -- a stronger candidate against obama, and the one thing that the party does want, they want to make sure that obama loses.
>> still a ballgame. issue three, naive, arrogant, misguided and dangerous? >> we are going now to the united nations to demand our legitimate right, which is to become a full member of the united nations as a state of palestine. >> palestinian president mahmoud abbas wants the newest nation to be palestine. and he goes, where? to the israelis? no. to the u.n.? yes. the united nations. [overlapping audio]
at this very -- [overlapping audio] out palestinians are going to the u.n., they want the u.n. to declare a state. does the united nations have the legal authority to grant statehood to the palestinians? >> no, they don't. what they do, they can recognize as a state more purposes of the united nations but does not create the state. >> what -- who can create a state? >> the state, there are defer nations of say state. they have to be in control of the areaeathey have to have a functioning government. they do not have that, particularly with hamas controlling one end of the palestinians. >> only one state can declare another state to be a -- >> yes, but the issue here is not who declares it. the united nations would confer a certain amount of legitimacy to the palestinian state as they would like it to be, and they feel that that is what they want to have without doing the negotiations with the israelis. >> what is the bottom line of this move? >> the bottom line of this move
in my judgment, it will go nowhere and make it much more difficult for agreement to come out of it. because they're not just asking for a state, they're asking to end that resolution, to have several key issues about the state resolved in that thing. >> one more question, what is obama's position? >> well, i'm not quite sure what his position is because i think his position as evolved. >> the position is that he approves of what the palestinians are doing, correct? approves of the israeli resistance to the palestinians. >> yes. >> and he's opposed united states and i've heard the deputy secretary of state of talk about it. if they put no that resolution terms that really should be negotiated between the israelis, it will stop all negotiations. these things have got to be negotiated, out of the eye of the cameras, and where they have a chance to -- >> john, obama will ve statehood for -- in the u.n. for palestine otherwise he
would lose the election. >> one quick question, obama said that in the 1967 borders retracting to there, was swapped. now, why -- swapped, why doesn't that cover obama? >> the question is what the israelis have to trade are the borders issue. with the borders issue, you solve the whole issue of the settlements and you have whatever the outcome of configuration. if then fix it without dealing with security, > issue four, pakistan's double dealing? >> the support of terrorism is part of their national strategy. >> on thursday, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, mike mullen, delivered a scathing allegation against our ally pakistan. he testified pakistan was behind an attack on the u.s. embassy in kabul, afghanistan, last week that killed two dozen
people. have accusing them of supporting the terrorist group that ed the attack, the had connie network. >> with isi support, the operatives planned conducted that truck bomb attack as well as the assault on our embassy. >> over the last nine years the u.s. has given pakistan $20 billion in military development aid. question, what kind of image is the united states projecting to the world when our supposed ally, pakistan, stages an attack in afghanistan? >> pakistan is always played a dole game with us. but this is a lot more blatant than in the past. and this has implications for our president in afghanistan. why are we staying there? we were staying there to help protect pakistan, worried about the nuclear weapons and we don't want them to fall into the hands of terrorists. so i think this really does present a dilemma for the u.s., because we -- we're obviously
not in control of our friends. >> what about the day before mullen's appearance in the congress, the senate appropriates $1 billion in aid for pakistan? >> this is astonishing, that he is fighting a war in wartime, accusing this. of duplicity and being behind an attack on americans. this is enormously important and it raises real questions about how long we're staying there and what we're fighting for in afghanistan, and pakistan -- >> good point. what kind of image are we presenting to the world at large when this kind of thing takes place? >> i'm astonished they went public with this, because what it suggests is our patience is exhausted with these guys and they're going public. >> the man who blew up his turban and killed the principle negotiator with the taliban was also -- suggested that was also done through the network.
so this is really astonishing. very important -- >> and what we're learning and it's -- interesting contrast to the republican debates where things will cut and simple, we have enemies, allies, good guys and balance guys. that didn't happen, especially not in the middle east. we need pakistan to help us quash al-qaeda in their regions and afghanistan, and we also need them to not let their nuclear weapons not get in the people -- >> i want the bigger world impression. have we become the laughingstock of the world? are we clearly a country in decline? here's a new book. i recommend it. i haven't read the whole thing but what i've read seems on the money. i will tell you what the book is about. first of all, thomas friedman volution information technology, the nation's chronic deficits and our
consumption. their conclusions is we're failing to meet our future requests. our future demands. in other words, we're watching a nation in decline. >> well, is that news? >> is there any doubt about that? >> no. >> yes. >> europe is also in decline and china and india and brazil on the rise. we got to get adjusted to that and be competitive, which requires -- >> suppose the euro zone fails. that's the zone of economic policy. is that going to affect us? >> sure it's going to affect us. john, the west is in decline. somebody 10 years ago wrote a book called death of the west. you might be familiar with it. >> the theme song. >> lit prediction, pat. >> obama won the jewish vote by 57 points last time, he won't win it by 37 this time. >> romney will aggressessively compete in iowa in hopes of taking out perry.